Little Drawers

October 27, 2006

When I was a kid my older sister had this wonderful desk. It was similar to a roll-top desk but it didn’t roll, it folded. It was a very old desk made of walnut, I believe, with turned legs. The top would fold up to reveal the writing surface and all of these little cubby-holes and drawers across the top. I loved to sit and explore all of those little cubbies and drawers. I don’t remember what items were in those pigeonholes, I just remember that the fact that they were in those spaces made them precious treasures.

While I was in college I loved going to the library and going to the card catalog. Remember card catalogs? They were banks of little drawers full of a different kind of treasure; the names and locations of books! I would slide the drawers open and shut. I can still imagine the feel and sound of the drawer sliding, wood on wood. The names of the books inside were that more precious because they were in a special little drawer.


Little drawers still hold that fascination for me. I have created my own bank of little drawers on my sewing table. Stacks of little plastic drawers from Sterilite. They don’t have the warmth and quality of the wooden drawers. But the treasures stored in those drawers are more precious because they are in little drawers; beads, buttons, ribbons, lace and found treasures of all kinds. I still love to sit and explore all of the treasures, contained inside, made more precious just because they are in a little drawer. Some things I’ll just never grow out of.





  1. What an interesting way to look at things, and what lovely memories you’ve brought up: the BIG card file at the central library (and the cards for the popular books were more worn than others); the yen to put something in all the cubbies and nooks of any roll-top desk; and the little paperboard chest of drawers in my Christmas stocking once…it was about three inches square (no, cubed) with three drawers. There was marzipan in one of the drawers…it didn’t last as long as the drawers! Just last week rediscovered my button stash…maybe I need to get some little drawers like yours.

  2. I have tons of drawers and then drawers inside of drawers. I am totally in love with drawers and boxes. Understand completely!

  3. I have those same little drawers on my sewing table! The contents inside are indeed more special because they are in those little drawers. I agree about the library card catalog. I am sad that my kids will never have the experience of pulling one of those out to search inside those wonderful rows of cards…I loved that part of the library almost as much as the books…Thanks for the memory jog!

  4. Do libraries still have those little drawers? I haven’t been to one in so long. I also think it would be so much fun to have a bank of those little drawers in my studio just to hold all those little treasures that one collects.

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